“No pride for some of us without liberation for all of us.”
- Marsha P. Johnson
"Regardless of what battle that you're going through, you don't need to break other people to make you feel good. You don't have to hurt other people just to make you feel uplifted."
- Jasmine, Grindr user
This guide is to help you understand how your words and actions can affect others. We believe in free expression, but not at the expense of other people. Making others feel good about themselves will make you feel good too.
- Remember that everyone on Grindr is here to have fun and feel good about themselves, just like you are.
- Being exclusionary can prevent you from getting to know people for who they are.
- On your profile, share your desires in a positive way, rather than saying who you don’t want to see.
- Call out and report racism and discrimination on Grindr if you see it, so that we can take action.
- People of all gender identities and expressions are welcome on Grindr.
- If you’re not interested in someone, be kind.
- If you’ve caused harm through your actions or words, apologize sincerely.
If you have experienced racism and discrimination, there are resources for you at the end of this guide.
Speak up and condemn racism and discrimination.
- Blossom, Grindr user
In addition to reporting, you may want to safely stand up for others as a bystander. If you do want to say something, keep comments short and simple:
- That’s not okay.
- That word comes from a racist stereotype and could hurt someone.
- I find it really disrespectful that you said that.
- Bystander action | Racism. It Stops With Me
- 15 things LGBTQ people of colour want you to know
- Qué hacer y qué no hacer en la participación de espectadores
We encourage you to visit Kindr Grindr for more stories and perspectives, as well as our Gender Identity FAQs. We are committed to continuing to expand our resources and information around all forms of discrimination.
Treat everyone like the unique, individual person that they are.
- Ray, Grindr user
- Sexual racism is having a bias against certain races when it comes to sex or dating. It relegates people of color to a lesser status below whiteness, and/or only awards value to people of color through objectification. It is not simply a 'preference' or a personal matter of what is attractive in a sexual partner.
- Fetishization, which can also be a form of sexual racism or discrimination, is oversexualizing someone based on a single trait, characteristic, identity, or type. It puts the emphasis on one person’s desire, while dehumanizing the other person.
Dismissing an entire group of people out of hand is discrimination, and it hurts. It is especially painful for those who have been systematically oppressed due to their identity in many other spaces in their lives.
If you focus on someone’s specific body parts, whether it’s their skin color or other features, it’s objectifying. Even if you think you’re being flattering or giving a compliment, it’s not. It makes people feel like they’re not being seen for who they really are.
Avoid saying things like:
- I’ve never been with a [insert identity] before.
- I have a thing for [insert identity].
- I love BBC.
- You look so exotic.
- Your chocolate/ caramel [or other food description] skin is so sexy.
- Have you had bottom surgery? (more here)
- Where are you from? No, where are you REALLY from?
You can look at someone’s profile tags as a starting point for conversation. If someone has added a tag, they are likely to be open to talking about that interest or hobby.
- 3 "compliments" that actually fetishize POC
- Being an ally | Racism. It Stops With Me
- The Guide to Allyship
- Are you behaving respectfully online? | LGBTIQ+ | Australian eSafety Commissioner
- Cinco cosas para frenar el racismo y discriminacion
- Dez expressões racistas que você fala sem perceber
Share who you ARE looking for, not who you AREN’T looking for.
"Just think about what you put in your profile. Think about when you say what you like and don't like. It's OK to have opinions, but it's not OK to discriminate."
- Derrick, Grindr user
- Interested in gay men
- Looking for my bi+ babes
- POC to the front
- Hit me up if you’re femme!
Content rejecting specific groups from historically marginalized backgrounds can be seen as hate speech. This includes “this group only” statements.
If you do want to tell someone you’re not interested, be kind. Don’t insult them or bring their identity into it. Below are some scripts to try:
- Hey, sorry, don’t think it’s a match for me. Good luck :)
- Not a match -- wishing you the best!
- It sounds like we’re interested in different things. I hope you find what you’re looking for.
You can also mute a conversation or block the profile if someone isn’t a match or you don’t want to continue the conversation.
- The Daily Show: When preferences become discrimination
- Transfemme - Information for men who date trans women
- Sexual Racism Isn't a 'Preference' – It's Systemic | EDGE Media Network
How to respond if you’ve been held accountable.
"You don't feel better, you don't get better, you don't love yourself more by making other people feel like shit."
- Troy, Grindr user
- Notice how you’re feeling. It’s common to feel shame or anger, but this is a good opportunity to show up as who you really are: a good person who is a work in progress.
- Focus on the outcome, not your intention. Even if you didn’t mean to hurt someone, their feelings are valid.
- Think about how the other person might feel, and how you might feel if you were in their place.
- Do your own research. It’s not the role of the person you harmed to educate you.
- Apologize and show accountability. (Not “I’m sorry if you felt that way”)
- Commit to doing better next time. What will you do to prevent harming someone again?
Read more: How to respond if you were disrespectful
Educate yourself, and get involved with organizations working to combat racism and discrimination.
There are many organizations doing great work. Here are a few:
- Racism. It Stops With Me
- Racial Equity Tools
- Hate is a Virus
- Black Lives Matter
- Dismantling Racism
- Asociación de Comunidades Negras del Cesar
- Rede Mulheres Negras do Paraná
- Resource Library - Trans Lifeline
How you can practice self-care if you’ve experienced discrimination.
"The best advice I could give for someone who's going through similar circumstances as I am is to have a very positive inner dialogue with yourself. The other noises and the other voices will eventually drown out."
- Tommy, Grindr user
- Know that you are not to blame.
- Reach out to people who care about you- family, friends, a therapist, or an advocate. Some resources for LGBTQ friendly helplines are here.
- Reporting the incident can help you feel in control of the situation. Here’s how to report on Grindr.
- Decide how to respond. You can block and mute on Grindr.
- Think about things that feel validating and give you energy, vs. things that drain you.
- Take a break from apps and the internet. Some options that can help include taking a walk outside, taking a bath, meditation, creating art, dancing, etc.
- Self care for people experiencing harassment.
- Building online resilience | LGBTIQ+ | Australian eSafety Commissioner
- Self-Care: How to Remain Vigilant in Your Pursuit of Justice and Keep Your Spirit Intact
- Right To Be - How to respond to harassment
- Self Care & Emotional Support – Trans Lifeline
- Resilience in the face of crisis